Recipe: Beef up your diet with 10 big nutrients

by Lori Wuellner
May is Beef Month in the state of Kansas.

This declaration makes this the 31st consecutive year beef has received this honor. It’s no surprise that beef contributes substantially to the human diet.

Check out the “Beef Big 10” nutrients –
• Iron helps your body use oxygen.
• Choline supports nervous system development.
• Protein helps preserve and build muscle.
• Selenium helps protect cells from damage.
• Vitamins B6 and B12 help maintain brain function.
• Zinc helps maintain a healthy immune system.
• Phosphorus helps build bones and teeth.
• Niacin supports energy production and metabolism.
• Riboflavin helps convert food into fuel.

All lean beef cuts have less than 10 grams of total fat, 4.5 grams or less of saturated fat and less than 96 milligrams of cholesterol per 3.5 ounce cooked serving. Some cuts of beef are as lean as a 3-oz. skinless chicken thigh.

Did you know?
• A 3-oz serving of lean beef provides 25 grams (about half) of the Daily Value for protein, which is one of the most satisfying nutrients.
• Exercise is more effective when paired with a higher-protein diet.
• Research shows that including lean beef, even daily as part of a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle, improved cholesterol levels.
(Source: Kansas Beef Council)
Lori Wuellner is a Wyandotte County Extension agent, Family and Consumer Sciences, K-State Research and Extension, 1216 N. 79th St., Kansas City, Kan. Telephone 913-299-9300, email

Szechuan beef stir-fry
2 beef Ranch Steaks, cut 3/4 inch thick (about 8 ounces each)
1 package (10 ounces) fresh vegetable stir-fry blend
3 tablespoons water
1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 cup prepared sesame-ginger stir-fry sauce
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cups hot cooked rice or brown rice, prepared without butter or salt
1/4 cup dry-roasted peanuts

Combine vegetables and water in large nonstick skillet; cover and cook over medium-high heat 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove and drain vegetables. Set aside.

Meanwhile cut beef steaks into 1/4-inch thick strips.

Heat same skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add 1/2 of beef and 1/2 of garlic; stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes or until outside surface of beef is no longer pink. Remove from skillet; keep warm. Repeat with remaining beef and garlic.

Return all beef and vegetables to skillet. Add stir-fry sauce and red pepper; cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes or until heated through. Spoon over rice. Sprinkle with peanuts.

Nutrition information per serving, using beef shoulder center steaks: 384 calories; 11 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 5 g monounsaturated fat); 65 mg cholesterol; 1120 mg sodium; 39 g carbohydrate; 1.9 g fiber; 30 g protein; 10.7 mg niacin; 0.6 mg vitamin B6; 4.2 mcg vitamin B12; 4.1 mg iron; 43.1 mcg selenium; 6.7 mg zinc; 104.2 mg choline.

Nutrition information per serving, using beef top sirloin steak: 385 calories; 10 g fat (3 g saturated fat; 4 g monounsaturated fat); 70 mg cholesterol; 1123 mg sodium; 39 g carbohydrate; 1.9 g fiber; 33 g protein; 14.0 mg niacin; 0.6 mg vitamin B6; 1.5 mcg vitamin B12; 3.4 mg iron; 38.2 mcg selenium; 5.6 mg zinc; 104.2 mg choline.

(Recipe as seen in The Healthy Beef Cookbook, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013 Cattlemen’s Beef Board and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association)

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